A case for place: visual communication as a tool in fostering a sense of pride within communities
eLearning / Savannah, Ga. : Savannah College of Art and Design
Thesis (M.F.A.) -- Graphic Design
Savannah College of Art and Design -- Department of Graphic Design
Includes bibliographical references (p. 88-91).
Over the past twenty years, community pride has almost vanished within communities with fewer people prepared to look out for their neighbors or ask them for help. Gone are the days when people would have conversations over a white-picket fence or nip around to borrow some milk. As social creatures we crave connection and inclusion (each of us in our own different ways) and in doing so we feel understood, needed and united. A community gives us a sense of belonging, where one can share and be of use to others, be wanted and feel something akin to home. Quite often, communities are created without the consideration of those who inhabit the space, thereby leaving cultural identity, social cohesion and place identification unable to form. Through the examination of cultural identity, social cohesion and place identification, this thesis aims to explore the role of visual communication as a tool in fostering community pride. This paper examines the definition of community, the effects of technology and the built environment on communication, and discusses the three key components to the foundation of a community. A survey was conducted using two different methods. The first method involved asking participants open-ended questions and the second method involved asking participants questions using the “Sense of Community Index.” Both methods targeted two exclusive groups of people. The first group targeted a large group of people – ages 18-65, who live throughout the United States. The second group targeted the D.C. Metropolitan area, also ages 18-65. This survey was conducted to gain insight into how people interact, communicate, and take pride in their communities. The study revealed that there is a lack of pride, interaction, and communication – possibly due to the effects that technology and the built environment have had within communities. The study further revealed that although many were proud of where they lived, interaction and communication amongst neighbors was obsolete. Perhaps not all hope is lost for communities. This thesis proposes a visual solution to the effects of technology and the built environment on communities – neighborly is an app that was created to foster pride and communication among people in mutual communities to solve some of the problems discussed within this paper.
Keywords: visual communication, community, social cohesion, place identification, cultural identity, sense of pride, neighbors, communication, technology, built environment
CHAIR: Montero, Jorge
PDF; 174 p. : ill. (some col.)
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